Collections mechanisms are ways of collecting on judgements. Once you win at court, you have a judgment. The next step is to collect what is owed to you. Our Calgary based lawyers at Kahane Law Office can help with collections across Alberta. Even if you use a collection agency, there are ways of collecting debts that only lawyers can perform.
Ways of Collecting Debts
There are several ways of collecting debts. These collections mechanisms include garnishment and seizure. Both these ways of collecting debts have a cost and effort associated with them. There are other collection mechanisms available.
Easy Ways of Collecting Debts
If a judgment debtor has assets then collecting those debts may be easy. At a bare minimum, you can register your judgment with the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta (only necessary if your judgment is from the Provincial Court of Alberta), and then obtain a Writ of Enforcement. A Writ of Enforcement can then be filed at the Personal Property Registry. Having done that, you can simply sit back and wait and see if anybody else obtains a judgment against the judgment debtor or undertakes any enforcement proceedings. If the judgment debtor is the subject of Seizure or Garnishment proceedings while your Writ is in force, you will generally be entitled to a portion of the amounts obtained through those proceedings.
Collections when the Debtor Owns Real Estate
Another option is to register your writ against the title to real property owned by the judgment debtor. Real property is a house, condominium, or land. With a writ in place, you can begin proceedings to force the sale of that property. Such proceedings can be fairly complicated however, and there are limits regarding executing a judgment against the principal residence of a judgment debtor, so you will definitely want to consult with a lawyer before undertaking such proceedings.
However, even if you don’t want to take proceedings to force the sale of real property, you can leave the writ in place as a charge against the land, and if the judgment debtor sells the property or attempts to use it as security for borrowing money, they may be forced to pay the judgment debt as part of that process.
Still More Collections Options
In addition to the foregoing, there may be other ways of collecting debts that may be applicable to your particular situation, so it is worth talking to a lawyer to see if any of them are right for you.